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Tear Jerker / StarCraft II: Legacy of the Void

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For the original StarCraft, see here.

For Wings of Liberty, see here.

For Heart Of The Swarm, see here.

  • The entire story of the Protoss up to the first half of Legacy can only be defined as a very long species-wide Trauma Conga Line, where they suffer one horrible loss after another, with only costly sacrifices keeping complete disaster at bay. They spend their entire campaign in the original Starcraft trying to save their homeworld... which they need to abandon anyway after seventy percent of its population is slaughtered by the zerg. Their Brood War campaign was entirely dedicated to saving Shakuras... and it has to be obliterated early in the campaign because it is lost to Amon's zerg and hybrid armies. Almost every last Protoss hero has been killed off or exiled by the time their campaign begins, and Artanis becomes the last Protoss character standing before the prologue has even concluded. The retaking of Aiur fails miserably the first time round, and the greater whole of their race is enslaved by an Eldritch Abomination (adding insult to injury, said abomination corrupts the most hallowed and sacred aspect of Protoss Culture, the Khala, in order to accomplish this, and the Khala was originally meant as that- a tool to enslave them). For all their strength, technology, and dedication, the Protoss seem powerless to prevent their civilization from crumbling apart before their eyes.
    • A further testament to Artanis's tenacity, and that of his team despite the above losses and his own self-doubt. As leader, he freed the Purifiers; their integration into protoss society with Talandar as their leader meant that one does not even have to be of flesh and blood to be counted as protoss. Also, with the abandonment of the Khala, the protoss become truly free, but will exercise their new-found freedom cautiously due to the mistakes of the past. The Nerazim and Tal'darim who chose to leave Alarak also join as equals, and would surely boost their numbers. The caste system is discarded, meaning that just like the Nerazim, all protoss civilians can now train as warriors. New heroes have stepped up to the challenge (Vorazun), and from seemingly the most unlikely of places (Karax). Valerian is right: It's not only the zerg who can adapt.
    Artanis: Together, we are strong!
  • The guys at Blizzard did well to represent the Protoss' Darkest Hour. Even after escaping on the Spear of Adun, everything has lain dormant for a millennia and needs time to wake up. During this time, everything is darkened. There's no light except for the consoles of the ship. Everything feels melancholic.
    • Even the solar core, what is possibly the apex of engineering we have seen from the Protoss, retreats back into its shell as ignition slowly starts, offering no light to anyone outside - there's simply none to spare, everything the solar core has is being used just to power the Spear of Adun and feed the remnant of uncorrupted Protoss aboard. There is little doubt that despite escaping in an Arkship specifically designed for facing a Darkest Hour, the coming battles will take everything you have. Only once things start to look up does the light return - untill then, you will feel how the Protoss do, thrashing within a dark void of lonely melancholy.
  • Although this phrase has been uttered countless times before, we are reminded that it is far more than mere hyperbole;
    Zeratul: My life... FOR AIUR!
    • Even more tragic is that it was Artanis (well, sort of) who dealt the death-blow. The two of them had been close friends since the Brood War, and even though Protoss faces are hard to read, it's clear just how deeply this affects him.
      • It was even worse for long time fans once they realized that all but one of the Protoss characters from the original campaign were now dead. Of the five named Protoss (including Artanis who was the Episode III Executor), Tassadar sacrificed himself to destroy the Zerg Overmind, Aldaris and Fenix were both betrayed and murdered by Kerrigan (and, since his taint was confirmed to have affected her during that time, Amon), and now Zeratul is gone at last. Even the possibility of Tassadar and Fenix returning (As a spirit and an A.I. respectively) turns out to be a False Hope note . With Zeratul's passing, Artanis is the last Protoss standing from the original campaign.
  • Talking to the Protoss, especially early in the game, about how they feel about having to sever their nerve cords. Their comments are variably that they now feel alone and isolated.
    Karax: Without the Khala, it is as if I am blind. I cannot sense your feelings, know the true depths of your thoughts. I cannot call upon the surety of other phase-smiths. I am... alone.
    Artanis: I feel the isolation as well, as though thrashing within the vacuum of space. But You Are Not Alone, brother.
    Karax: To think, The Dark Templar have endured this existence all this time. The days ahead will not be easy.
    • How isolated? So isolated that even The Purifiers were developed with a synthetic representation of the Khala, because the Protoss that created them could not imagine a life without it.
    • Adding to that, the final cutscene of the campaign proper: Even after having been under Amon's thrall for a long time because of the Khala, the look on all the Protoss' faces as they sever their nerve cords is one that is pained with grief, but it's heavily suggested the process is also physically painful akin to amputation. It is very clear that the Protoss really did enjoy the benefits of living as one through the uncorrupted Khala and they only do what must be done because the alternative is so bad as to be non-existent.
  • The destruction of Shakuras, because it is beyond saving due to the Zerg infestation. As the second homeworld of the Protoss, it is hard for Artanis and Vorazun to make this decision. Nevertheless, they carry on this task as if they cannot have Shakuras, neither can Amon. Fans who remembered Brood War were hit especially hard, as saving Shakuras was the central goal of the Protoss campaign, and in the span of two missions, all that effort was reduced to ash.
  • In the epilogue, Tassadar's spirit revealed himself as Ouros the Xel'naga. In order to combat Amon, Ouros said that Kerrigan must become a Xel'naga and end the Void's corruption once and for all. You can tell how horrified Jim was when he realized that Sarah will be further mutilated and pleaded her not to go through the process. However, Kerrigan insisted on fulfilling her destiny as a means to atone her past sins. Thankfully, she and Raynor reunite after all is said and done.
    • The actual ascension is a somber moment itself. As Kerrigan absorbs the last of the energy that Ouros offered, and knowing that his purpose is fulfilled, he begins to perish. With his passing, beyond Amon, it marks the end of the true Xel'naga before their children. All Artanis can do after witnessing their passing is to kneel solemnly without so much as a word, with the knowledge that the last of their creators have passed on.
  • Artanis manages to save Korhal from the Hybrids and their mind controlled Terrans, but the damage from their attack was done. The cinematic following the Korhal missions manages to perfectly convey the despair of the situation before a single word is spoken. Matt tries to help a fatally injured Marine before looking despondently at the destruction of the city. Valerian closes a dead man's eyes. And Jim and Artanis overlook the whole scene, talking about how not even the Zerg caused such destruction. When Jim places a rifle in the ground as a grave marker, Artanis asks if Jim knew the soldier, only for Jim to say he didn't know him but he knew his story. And more like him all over the sector are dying.
    Artanis: Did you know this warrior?
    Raynor: No. But I know his story. I know all their stories. None of them ever think it'll end like this.
    • The helplessness only increases when you remember that the Dominion had just gone through a civil war (fought between Arcturus and Valerian) at the beginning of Heart and damage caused by the Swarm's attacks as Kerrigan fights her way to Arcturus. Valerian's team barely had time to catch their breaths and rebuild before Amon throws Moebius Corps and the freaking Golden Armada at them.
    • Tellingly, there is a strong degree of Fridge Horror behind Jim's words: The majority of the Dominion standard army, who were mostly criminal conscripts, died during the civil war between Valerian and Arcturus as well as Kerrigan's siege of Korhal; it's completely possible that by this point they had to resort to enlist all able men and women they can into the army.
    • Artanis offers to shake Jim's hand as a sign of respect for Terran traditions and their friendship. Jim looks at Artanis' arm and notices that he's using Zeratul's warp blade. While Artanis only said that Zeratul fell on Aiur, Jim is implied to connect the dots enough to know that he Died in Your Arms Tonight.
  • The last cinematic of the epilogue: two years have passed and Jim is once more alone in a bar, staring at his badge, and remembering the people he was close to and lost: Tychus, Zeratul, and Kerrigan. He meant what he said to Tosh about having no place in the future Matt and Valerian are creating. Thankfully, Xel'naga Kerrigan arrives and they go on to the next chapter of their lives together.
    • The fact that he even remembers his late friend Tychus shows that, after all that happened, he still remembers him as a friend.
  • Just like the Protoss example, by the end only Artanis is left as the only active character of the original campaign: Jim and Sarah's whereabouts are unknown, Zeratul is dead and Fenix/Talandar has chosen to become his own person beyond the memories of the late templar. It truly marks an End of an Era for everyone.
    • Although Stukov's still around, he is, for all intents and purposes, a Flying Dutchman, with the Zerg. Not to mention his ominous warnings of the UED's eventual return.
  • In the Co-op mode, one of Stukov's lines for using the Aleksander is rather sad. Despite his transformation, he still remembers his fallen comrade.
    Stukov: Ah, the Aleksander. I am glad that Gerard never saw it like this.

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